NEWBURYPORT, MA--(Marketwire - Aug 13, 2012) - Fishing for Energy, the partnership that provides commercial fishermen a cost-free way to recycle old and unusable fishing gear, today announced the participation of Newburyport, MA in the program. Gear collected from local commercial fishermen will be hauled and stripped of metals for recycling with the help of Schnitzer Steel and processed into renewable energy at the Covanta Haverhill Energy-from-Waste facility.
Fishing for Energy is a partnership between Covanta Energy Corporation, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Marine Debris Program, and Schnitzer Steel Industries, Inc. The partnership was established in 2008 to reduce the financial burden imposed on commercial fishermen when disposing of old, derelict (gear that is lost in the marine environment) or unusable fishing gear and thereby reduce the amount of gear that ends up in U.S. coastal waters.
Fishing for Energy makes it easy for Newburyport to deal with the issue of derelict gear and marine debris by placing a collection bin at the Harbormaster's Office and Dock. The program significantly increases the likelihood that derelict gear does not end up in the marine environment.
"Newburyport not only has a commercial fishing fleet that brings in derelict equipment, but because of our location on the coast and at the mouth of the Merrimack River we see a lot of traffic and debris. We received our 30 yard bin in mid-July and by the end of the month had already filled it," said Newburyport Harbormaster Paul Hogg.
At a ceremony held this morning at the Newburyport Harbormaster's Office, the partnership welcomed the addition of Newburyport as they continued to fill a new bin with old, abandoned and lost fishing gear from the area disposed of by commercial fishermen. Newburyport's Mayor Donna D. Holaday said, "Newburyport prides itself on continuing to protect its rich maritime history and abundant coastal resources through these kinds of innovative preservation initiatives. This program is invaluable to us and works well alongside all of our efforts to maintain our beautiful historic community."
Speaking on behalf of the partnership, Colin Kelly, Schnitzer Steel's manager of government and public relations said, "We are pleased to be able to continue the expansion of the Fishing for Energy program by adding our eleventh location in Massachusetts. This is a great opportunity for local fishermen to dispose of unused gear free of charge, thereby helping to protect the marine environment that is so important to their livelihoods."
Abandoned or lost fishing equipment can threaten marine life in a number of ways; by damaging ecosystems as nets and heavy equipment settle upon the ocean floor or through 'ghost fishing,' wherein a net continues to catch fish, even if abandoned or lost. Gear can also impact navigational safety, damage fishing equipment and boats that are in use, and have economic repercussions on fishing and shipping enterprises and coastal communities.
Fishing for Energy thrives due to extensive cooperation between government, private, public and local organizations. The diversity and unparalleled expertise of the partners results in a unique, community-focused program that addresses a marine environmental issue, reduces costs for small commercial fishing businesses and recycles metal and recovers energy from the remaining material.
Since launching in 2008, Fishing for Energy has reeled in more than 1.5 million pounds of old fishing gear, a portion of which has been retrieved directly from the ocean by fishermen. In 2010, Fishing for Energy was awarded the prestigious Coastal America Partnership Award, which is presented to groups that restore and protect coastal ecosystems through collaborative action and partnership. The partnership has expanded to include a grant program that directly supports efforts to remove derelict fishing gear from U.S. coastal waters and will continue to partner with new ports to promote retired or derelict fishing gear collection through community education and outreach. For more information on the partnership visit: www.nfwf.org/fishingforenergy.
Covanta Energy Corporation is an internationally recognized owner and operator of Energy-from-Waste and renewable energy projects. Covanta's 44 Energy-from-Waste facilities provide communities with an environmentally sound solution to their solid waste disposal needs by using that municipal solid waste to generate clean, renewable energy. Annually, Covanta's modern Energy-from-Waste facilities safely and securely convert approximately 20 million tons of waste into 9 million megawatt hours of clean, renewable electricity and create approximately 9 billion pounds of steam sold to a variety of industries. For more information, visit www.covantaenergy.com.
About National Fish and Wildlife Foundation
A nonprofit established by Congress in 1984, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation sustains, restores and enhances the Nation's fish, wildlife, plants and habitats. Through leadership conservation investments with public and private partners, NFWF is dedicated to achieving maximum conservation impact by developing and applying best practices and innovative methods for measurable outcomes. Since its establishment, NFWF has awarded nearly 9,500 grants to over 3,000 organizations in the United States and abroad and leveraged -- with its partners -- more than $400 million in federal funds into more than $1.3 billion for on-the-ground conservation. For more information, visit www.nfwf.org.
NOAA understands and predicts changes in the Earth's environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and conserves and manages our coastal and marine resources. The NOAA Marine Debris Program, housed within the Office of Response & Restoration, coordinates, strengthens, and increases the visibility of marine debris issues and efforts within the agency, its partners, and the public. The program supports activities at both a national and international level focused on identifying, reducing and preventing debris from entering the marine environment. NOAA's Office of Response and Restoration (OR&R) protects coastal and marine resources, mitigates threats, reduces harm, and restores ecological function. The Office provides comprehensive solutions to environmental hazards caused by oil, chemicals, and marine debris. For more information, visit: www.noaa.gov.
About Schnitzer Steel Industries, Inc.
Schnitzer Steel Industries, Inc. is one of the largest manufacturers and exporters of recycled ferrous metal products in the United States with 56 operating facilities located in 14 states, Puerto Rico and Western Canada. The business has seven deep water export facilities located on both the East and West Coasts and in Hawaii and Puerto Rico. The Company's integrated operating platform also includes its auto parts and steel manufacturing businesses. The Company's auto parts business sells used auto parts through its 50 self-service facilities located in 14 states and Western Canada. With an effective annual production capacity of approximately 800,000 tons, the Company's steel manufacturing business produces finished steel products, including rebar, wire rod and other specialty products. The Company commenced its 106th year of operations in fiscal 2012. Schnitzer was named Scrap Company of the Year by American Metals Market's 2011 Awards for Steel Excellence. This award recognizes advancements rooted in pioneering and implementing business improvements that have delivered real change to the steel industry.